Laura's Vegan Table


  • 1 block of firm or extra firm tofu
  • 1 cup rice (I used jasmine)
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1 large head of broccoli
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Better Than Bouillon Organic Vegetable Base mixed well into 1 1/2 cups hot water (or just use 1 1/2 cups vegetable broth in place of both)
  • 4-5 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons low sodium tamari or soy sauce (divided in half)
  • 2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil (divided in half)
  • 1 tablespoon flour, arrowroot powder, or cornstarch
  • toasted sesame seeds

I actually don’t eat a lot of tofu since I mostly use beans as a protein. But I do love it! Many people think tofu is all that vegans eat; and we do eat a lot of it. But don’t judge it by it’s bland appearance right out of the package. We all agree; it tastes like nothing that way. Tofu originated in China about 2000 years ago, so it’s been around a long time. It’s a versatile food that takes on the flavor of whatever you mix with it. It’s an inexpensive plant protein available at most grocery stores. I use a sprouted tofu, which only means it’s made from sprouted soybeans. When beans or seeds are sprouted, they’re more nutritious and easier to digest than the regular beans or seeds; however, this type usually has a little more calories and fat than the regular tofu.

The key technique in cooking with tofu is to squeeze out the water from it when you remove it from the package. You can do this by putting the tofu on some paper towels on a cutting board or a plate, and then putting a few more paper towels on top of it; then covering it with something heavy. I usually use a couple of metal cookie sheets or another heavy cutting board to do this, and just let it sit that way for about 10 minutes before cooking.


Add water to the rice and cook the rice according to package instructions. While the rice is cooking, remove the tofu from the package and drain the water. Cut the tofu block in half lengthwise, and put paper towels on top and on bottom; set between two cutting boards or plates (as described above). Let it sit like that for a few minutes, then remove paper towels and cut the tofu into cubes. Set aside. Chop up the broccoli into florets and steam, or cook in boiling water for a few minutes until firm. Drain the broccoli and set aside. Heat a nonstick pan on medium/high heat. Add one tablespoon of tamari and one teaspoon sesame oil to the pan. Add the tofu and stir. Cook until browned and set aside in a separate bowl.

For the sauce, add the remaining tablespoon of tamari and teaspoon of sesame oil to the pan. Heat on medium heat, add the flour (or arrowroot powder or cornstarch if you want gluten free), and combine to form a paste. Add the minced garlic and stir. Slowly add the broth to the pan and blend the ingredients together with a whisk or spoon. (If using a non-stick pan, be sure to use a silicone whisk, or rubber or wooden spoon. Metal will scratch non-stick pans). Lower the heat to a simmer for about 10 minutes so the sauce can thicken. Add the tofu and broccoli to a large bowl and pour the garlic sauce over it and stir until well combined. Add the cooked rice to a serving bowl, and add the tofu and broccoli over the rice. Sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds.